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 Post subject: Re: My senior recital
PostPosted: Tue Jul 12, 2011 5:56 pm 
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Yeah, that one was recommended to me by a friend (the best pianist I know), though I don't recall it being any faster than the other two I mentioned. It was more sensitively performed, though, if I remember correctly (I can't listen to it again right now).

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"Z Czernym poznałem się na panie brat—na dwa fortepiana często z nim u niego grywałem. Dobry człowiek, ale nic więcej..." - Fryderyk Chopin


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 Post subject: Re: My senior recital
PostPosted: Wed Jul 13, 2011 4:58 pm 
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Sorry I haven't managed to comment on this before - I've been on the road for a couple of days.

musical-md wrote:
When I have a passage that is difficult for my hand, here are some of the strategies and principles that I use to master it:
1. Make it more difficult than written
2. See No.1
How may this be done:
A. First one must understand where the mistake/difficulty lies. A "wrong" note is ALWAYS (except for "accidents") about the approach to the note, i.e. it is about everything BEFORE you play it. Therefore, always practice to stop on the given problem. NEVER begin practice on a "corrected" wrong note.

Yeah, I understand this much, which is what I was getting at with the hand position thing. There are various 'approach' methods that have to be used in 25/11, and some of them I haven't quite worked out yet. I only restart on the 'corrected' note in performance. :P

Quote:
B. Change rhythms so as to explore and work against new increased difficulty

I tried this, and it was fun. Specifically, I did dotted rhythms in the RH, which helped a bit with the prominence of the melody. But I wonder if that's when my problems with unevenness in the RH began; I didn't have that problem before. But it might have just been the increased speed. The dotted rhythms helped at first, but not very much. It was very jazzy, though; I tried playing it like that, usually without pedal, and I would end on a blues scale instead of the melodic minor. :lol:

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C. Practice passage-work in double-notes (25/11 is quite suitable for this)

I absolutely HATE practicing like this. I tried it with 25/11 but I didn't find it to be helpful at all.

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D. Practice faster and WITH metronome

Check! I do both slow practice and too-fast practice with the metronome, but sometimes it just becomes impossible for me to keep up with the metronome.

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E. Expand leaps by additional octave

Sometimes there is not enough room!

Quote:
F. Practice with eyes closed

I do this all the time, and often perform with eyes closed, and my teacher gets on to me for looking out into the audience (usually when someone, like my dad, is making too much noise). Chopin was actually disparaging of people who had to look at their hands when playing, but this is one of those pieces where it's damn near impossible to avoid looking at your hands, especially with the huge leaps.

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G. Practice ppp and fff

I have done this too, but right now I'm more worried that the dynamics aren't coming off like I want them to at all. At first my LH was way too loud, especially the V-I octaves in the bass (!), and it was just horrible, but now I've overcompensated I think.

Quote:
H. Practice it backwards (not the whole piece, just the problem areas).

I practice problem areas pretty randomly. Quite often I start out with the two measures of doom, or the bit leading into them.

Image

I have practiced those two measures more than I've ever practiced anything in my entire life. This is the hardest of three such examples in the piece (it's in a different key each time, and the third is more different than the other two), and I often find it useful to practice them in succession since the technique is similar. But I don't always do that.

Quote:
(I. I once knew a woman who could play some Czerny etude in any key you asked her! Crazy!)

Anyone who enjoys playing Czerny is crazy. I can play most things in whatever key you ask, but not all that well (I don't do it regularly in practice). Sometimes I transpose for fun; sometimes I switch things from major to minor, etc. I was talking to my teacher about transposing as I had just finished playing the Partita II Sarabande, and I told her to pick a key. She picked F# minor, so I played it in F# minor, and she was just amazed. I was amazed because it's not as if I played it anywhere near as well as I play it in C minor, and I was under the impression that most (music major) pianists could transpose with similar aptitude, but apparently I was wrong. Then I did the capriccio in F# minor, with a bit more difficulty, lol. I asked my teacher, 'Don't the non-pianists have to transpose for their piano competency exam?' and she says, 'Yeah, they have to do America the Beautiful, not Bach!' I guess I don't see much difference. I taught myself how to play piano, and knew all the keys from an early age. I wonder if it's because I didn't have any conception of certain keys being more difficult than others, because I couldn't read music.

As for the breath of fresh air...I think that's now, for 25/11. I have been seriously neglecting it for the last few months to work on 25/12 and Beethoven (I wish I'd spent more time on Bach). I mostly worked on 25/12, really...I hate practicing Beethoven with an unholy passion. So now I'm ready to dig back into 25/11, especially now that I've posted recordings and I've seen how fascinated people are with the piece - it gives me extra encouragement to try to play it well. I also posted links to my recital recordings at Piano World (I have been hanging out in their Chopin thread lately, just because there aren't enough people here who like talking about Chopin; I much prefer the atmosphere here, but Kallberg hangs out over there, and I am digging his occasional comments). Anyway, 25/11 has been downloaded more than all the other pieces combined. And that's not counting the original links I posted at PW, which I made when I wasn't logged in to Mediafire. I have no idea how much they were downloaded, but the comments indicated that most people listened to 25/11.

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"Z Czernym poznałem się na panie brat—na dwa fortepiana często z nim u niego grywałem. Dobry człowiek, ale nic więcej..." - Fryderyk Chopin


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 Post subject: Re: My senior recital
PostPosted: Wed Jul 13, 2011 9:41 pm 
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Location: Springfield, Missouri, USA
For some reason I don't see your score image (maybe will from home). Regarding Czerny, call me crazy! When you practice in dotted rhythm(s), you do change where the "dot" is right? Use all the combos you can make: iambic, trochaic, anapestic, dactylic, etc.

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"A smattering will not do. They must know all the keys, major and minor, and they must literally 'know them backwards.'" - Josef Lhevinne


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 Post subject: Re: My senior recital
PostPosted: Wed Jul 13, 2011 11:02 pm 
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Location: Gulfport, MS, USA
Yeah, it's a photobucket image so I wouldn't be surprised if your work has it blocked. It's mm. 81-82.

I was advised to change the location of the dot, but I found it too cumbersome and not helpful enough. That's when I stopped using the dotted rhythms altogether. I've started slow-practicing again today, and I think for now I am going to concentrate on accenting each note of the melodic line equally (like I advised for the LH earlier - I haven't done enough of that with the RH). That is really difficult for me to do at a slow tempo, and it's obvious that this fact is the cause of my unevenness and the weakness of the RH. I'm practicing at 60 to the quarter with no pedal, and I think I'll probably do that for quite some time before I start notching it up. Already I made some improvement on evenness today with that approach. It's just going to take some discipline, and now that I don't have a recital to worry about, I can get back into the slow practice. Like I said, I've really been neglecting 25/11 recently. :(

As for Czerny...I have adopted Chopin's prejudices on many things, weird Chopin-fetishist as I am. :lol: Not that I was ever fond of Czerny. Was quite pleased to learn that Chopin wasn't either (as a composer - he liked the person well enough). What's funny is that Chopin started writing his etudes just after he met Czerny for the first time in Vienna, and there are snippets from his letters home to family and friends that indicate he had a low opinion of Czerny's music before meeting him, and that he continued to be unimpressed after. It seems almost as if, once he met the legend himself, he was inspired to write etudes in his 'own way' - that is, more musical and less 'industrious' - as if his trip to Vienna finally convinced him that he had a place in the world of virtuosic writing. I wonder if he played the few he'd written for Czerny when he returned to Vienna - as far as I know there's nothing to indicate one way or another. I wouldn't be surprised if he didn't, since he would have probably been uninterested in any criticism Czerny might offer.

Hmm...I think it's time to change my sig. :mrgreen:

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"Z Czernym poznałem się na panie brat—na dwa fortepiana często z nim u niego grywałem. Dobry człowiek, ale nic więcej..." - Fryderyk Chopin


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 Post subject: Re: My senior recital
PostPosted: Sat Aug 13, 2011 1:18 pm 
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Location: Germany
Terez, I did know (through Facebook) that you played a recital, and you posted this in the "General" again!
I listened to the three Chopin etudes, and as Chris already wrote, they are not "awful" at all. I find the 25-12 even fine. The others have just some stopping and restarting, which habbit you should overcome some day. Don't be discouraged! And I'm looking forward to see a post started by you on AR :D

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Hye-Jin Lee
"The love for music. The respect for the composer. The desire to express something that reaches and moves the listener." (Montserrat Caballé about her main motivation for becoming a singer)


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 Post subject: Re: My senior recital
PostPosted: Sat Aug 13, 2011 9:07 pm 
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hyenal wrote:
Terez, I did know (through Facebook) that you played a recital, and you posted this in the "General" again!
I listened to the three Chopin etudes, and as Chris already wrote, they are not "awful" at all. I find the 25-12 even fine. The others have just some stopping and restarting, which habbit you should overcome some day. Don't be discouraged! And I'm looking forward to see a post started by you on AR :D

Thanks so much for listening Hye-Jin! One day... :wink:

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"Z Czernym poznałem się na panie brat—na dwa fortepiana często z nim u niego grywałem. Dobry człowiek, ale nic więcej..." - Fryderyk Chopin


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 Post subject: Re: My senior recital
PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2011 12:51 pm 
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Just stumbled upon this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2ZI0InIJ1gA

Anybody here wanna give this a try ? :mrgreen:

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Nothing is always absolutely so -- Sturgeon's law
Chris Breemer


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 Post subject: Re: My senior recital
PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2011 2:41 pm 
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techneut wrote:
Just stumbled upon this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2ZI0InIJ1gA

Anybody here wanna give this a try ? :mrgreen:

I'll do it if you play 10/12 like Cameron Carpenter. :wink:

_________________
"Z Czernym poznałem się na panie brat—na dwa fortepiana często z nim u niego grywałem. Dobry człowiek, ale nic więcej..." - Fryderyk Chopin


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 Post subject: Re: My senior recital
PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2011 2:46 pm 
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Terez wrote:
I'll do it if you play 10/12 like Cameron Carpenter. :wink:

Tell you what. We'll challenge Carpenter into playing 25/11 on the pedals only :P

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Nothing is always absolutely so -- Sturgeon's law
Chris Breemer


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 Post subject: Re: My senior recital
PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2011 2:59 pm 
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No doubt he's already working on it.

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"Z Czernym poznałem się na panie brat—na dwa fortepiana często z nim u niego grywałem. Dobry człowiek, ale nic więcej..." - Fryderyk Chopin


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 Post subject: Re: My senior recital
PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 2011 8:35 pm 
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Location: Piemonte, Italy
Terez wrote:
That's a shame about Alfie. I knew he hadn't responded to my last email, but I wasn't sure if it was personal or a more general thing (though of course it might have been both).


If I remember well I didn't reply because I didn't know what to add to my previous mail. Now I listened to the 25/11 (the "decent" version) and I still have nothing to add. The muddy and distant recording doesn't help to discriminate the small details that would deserve a comment. On a larger scale, I still hear a lot of unevenness, "struggle", a very weak LH and definitely too much pedal (on the other hand nobody would expect that you resolve that bitch in a year or so).

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"A conclusion is simply the place where you got tired of thinking" - Anonymous

Alfonso Bertazzi, amateur pianist.


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 Post subject: Re: My senior recital
PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 2011 8:41 pm 
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Location: Gulfport, MS, USA
alf wrote:
Terez wrote:
That's a shame about Alfie. I knew he hadn't responded to my last email, but I wasn't sure if it was personal or a more general thing (though of course it might have been both).


If I remember well I didn't reply because I didn't know what to add to my previous mail. Now I listened to the 25/11 (the "decent" version) and I still have nothing to add. The muddy and distant recording doesn't help to discriminate the small details that would deserve a comment. On a larger scale, I still hear a lot of unevenness, "struggle", a very weak LH and definitely too much pedal (on the other hand nobody would expect that you resolve that bitch in a year or so).

Except for me! :lol: But yeah, I'm still working on it, though I took a break to start working on some other etudes. I'm encouraged by how much I have gained from working on 25/11, so I figured I stand to gain even more from working on others. 25/11 is back to half-tempo, or practicing at around 80, to get rid of the unevenness and struggle. (BTW, never fear to criticize - the best thing about being your own worst critic is that you can take it - if I thought any of these recordings were good, they'd be in the audition room).

I'm glad you're still alive. I miss you!

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"Z Czernym poznałem się na panie brat—na dwa fortepiana często z nim u niego grywałem. Dobry człowiek, ale nic więcej..." - Fryderyk Chopin


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 Post subject: Re: My senior recital
PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 2011 9:53 pm 
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Terez wrote:
alf wrote:
Terez wrote:
That's a shame about Alfie. I knew he hadn't responded to my last email, but I wasn't sure if it was personal or a more general thing (though of course it might have been both).


If I remember well I didn't reply because I didn't know what to add to my previous mail. Now I listened to the 25/11 (the "decent" version) and I still have nothing to add. The muddy and distant recording doesn't help to discriminate the small details that would deserve a comment. On a larger scale, I still hear a lot of unevenness, "struggle", a very weak LH and definitely too much pedal (on the other hand nobody would expect that you resolve that bitch in a year or so).


Except for me! :lol: But yeah, I'm still working on it, though I took a break to start working on some other etudes.


Working on different Chopin's etudes can help you to improve your technique on a general level, but each etude covers separate technical problems and you have only a moderate synergy by even studying them all. The sensible thing to do is - especially if you don't like studies and exercises - to find useful snippets from the piano literature to address your weak points. This requires a wide knowledge of the literature of course, or a teacher who has it in your place. I don't think that an average student can go very far hammering away at the same stuff for years, even if they are the Chopin's Etudes.

Terez wrote:
(BTW, never fear to criticize - the best thing about being your own worst critic is that you can take it - if I thought any of these recordings were good, they'd be in the audition room)


I don't have fear to criticize, if asked so, but why should I do it twice? :wink:

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"A conclusion is simply the place where you got tired of thinking" - Anonymous

Alfonso Bertazzi, amateur pianist.


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 Post subject: Re: My senior recital
PostPosted: Tue Aug 16, 2011 10:10 pm 
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alf wrote:
Working on different Chopin's etudes can help you to improve your technique on a general level, but each etude covers separate technical problems and you have only a moderate synergy by even studying them all. The sensible thing to do is - especially if you don't like studies and exercises - to find useful snippets from the piano literature to address your weak points. This requires a wide knowledge of the literature of course, or a teacher who has it in your place. I don't think that an average student can go very far hammering away at the same stuff for years, even if they are the Chopin's Etudes.

Eh, I'm having a moment with the Chopin etudes right now, but I have Bach moments as well. My weak points generally revolve around the fact that I have no technical grounding to speak of. And yes, I don't like playing boring technical exercises, but I haven't been convinced that I am missing anything yet. (Really, it's more to do with the fact that I know I don't have the capability to make myself practice them; it would make me want to quit piano.) I'm also not convinced that a wide knowledge of the literature is really necessary unless one plans on playing a wide range of literature. For now I feel like there is enough variety in Chopin and Bach to keep me going for the rest of my life, but I would be interested in hearing your arguments to the contrary. As for teachers...I played for as many master classes as I could during my years at school, and asked for advice from every skilled pianist I knew. Sometimes I don't know how to apply these things, which is frustrating, but I keep trucking on.

Terez wrote:
I don't have fear to criticize, if asked so, but why should I do it twice? :wink:

It's a good question. Depends on your regard for the person in question. :wink:

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"Z Czernym poznałem się na panie brat—na dwa fortepiana często z nim u niego grywałem. Dobry człowiek, ale nic więcej..." - Fryderyk Chopin


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